Theology, the Gods, and Me

Epiphany

A lot of people are currently discussing their understanding of the gods. Traci issues a challenging reminder not to let anthropomorphism cloud our understanding. Morpheus Ravenna, John Beckett, Sara Amis, and others, all give us their thoughtful perspectives. I hesitate to wade into the discussion, even though this is the very sort of discussion I'm trained to dissect.I think that's part of why discussing the gods is so challenging for me: I have too many theories, too many fancy words, and … [Read more...]

Review: The Passion of Mary

MaryBowen

When I was debating quitting my doctoral studies - specializing in the Virgin Mary - I came across a blog, Project Conversion, written by Andrew Bowen. In a last ditch attempt to deal with his own anger and disappointment with his Christian experience and the effects of the post-9/11 world, Bowen decided to explore twelve traditions in twelve months. He dove into each tradition, with a mentor, with books, with practice. He lived as if he was a believer of each faith. It was fascinating. … [Read more...]

Review: The Showings of Julian of Norwich

JulianNorwich

Mirabai Starr, teacher of philosophy and world religions at the University of New Mexico - Taos, has taken on the challenge of translating the writings of a thirteenth century Christian mystic from England and bringing them to a modern audience. Apparently, Starr is "at the vanguard of the emerging Interspiritual movement," a movement that I can't seem to find a lot of direct information about, but seems to be a rather New Age blur of the three major monotheistic traditions, focusing on a God of … [Read more...]

Singing In Christmas

OCS2013

Christmas has almost always been a cultural holiday for me. Growing up, I had stockings and a tree, but we never went to services, unless we were visiting family in Australia. Once I started singing I was more inclined to go to midnight caroling services and join in caroling parties. Even as a teenager exploring Christianity on my own, I continued to feel that most of the holiday was more about cultural traditions rather than religious observance.I still feel this way, and I have a soft spot … [Read more...]

Dual Observance and Me

Albrecht Durer, Die Vier Hexen (or The Four Witches), 1497.

Dual observance, the practice of  more than one tradition at one time, is more common than most people realize, I think. It's not just for Pagans, either. For some people, it becomes syncretism, a blending of two (or more) systems into one. For some, one practice is spiritual or religious and the other practice is more cultural. Some people pick and choose parts of various traditions they like, leaving the difficult, challenging, or distasteful aspects by the wayside. For others, like myself, … [Read more...]

Living Saraswati

Today begins the final three days of Navratri, in which Saraswati, goddess of language, knowledge and sound, is honored. I have an affinity with Her, as I have spent much of my life in pursuit of education and knowledge, as well as honing my singing skills.Saraswati is comparable to the Greek goddess Athena in many ways. Both are independent; Saraswati, unlike most of the other Hindu goddesses, is not the consort of any male deity; her devotion to her studies means she has little time for … [Read more...]

Harvest in the Pacific Northwest

At the beginning of August many of my Pagan friends celebrated the first harvest, commonly known as Lammas or Lughnasadh (from the Celtic calendar system). That observance has never meant much to me. I am not a farmer, and have spent precious little time in places where early August means first fruits of any kind. Now in Washington, it means the height of summer, and I spend my summer time waiting for the days to cool.As August passed I began to have half-formed thoughts of salmon. Had my … [Read more...]


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